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PostPosted: Wed Oct 16, 2013 8:30 pm 
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gad rgyangs wrote:
its simply a matter of intent: does one try to avoid participating in violence and killing as much as possible, or does one justify extra and unnecessary killing for the sake of one's gustatory pleasure?



There is no "extra" suffering in samsara.

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PostPosted: Wed Oct 16, 2013 8:37 pm 
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gad rgyangs wrote:
Malcolm wrote:

You left out the middle one:

"Eating without intent to kill."

Anyway, killing is not the problem, the taking of life is. The later requires intent. The former does not.

But eating anything that lives is a problem for something somewhere. All food involves the death of something else living.


thats like receiving stolen goods, knowing that they're stolen goods, and claiming innocence by saying "hey, i didn't steal them, I didn't even have any intent to steal them!"

even secular jurisprudence rejects this excuse as sophistry and puts your ass in jail.

Actually, there is a nuance of degrees of ill-intent. Some things are bad, and some things are more bad. Possession of stolen goods depends yields punishments of different degrees depending on the value, and in many countries, it yields absolutely no punishment if the goods are under a certain dollar value.

But I think you are missing Malcolm's point, in that you are inevitably going to kill whenever you eat anything, and there's nothing you can do about it - just some of the critters on your food are smaller, and some are bigger. The size and intelligence of the animal would also hold importance with regards to karma. The point really is to eat for the sake of eating.

Alan Watts talks about this in his lecture, "the Karma of Christianity:"


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PostPosted: Wed Oct 16, 2013 8:45 pm 
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KonchokZoepa wrote:
not exactly like that, and they would kill even if i wouldnt buy. it happens unrelated to me. i acknowledge that i am not helping in stopping to kill animals for meat and with my actions i am actually supporting it. but one person in so many doesnt make a difference.

and not having intent to kill even though you eat meat and having the intent to kill and meating eat are different even though i buy meat, if i buy meat it doesn't = intent to kill.


I don't see how it can be completely unrelated when one is intentionally giving financial support to a slaughterhouse and supporting someone else's wrong livelihood.

:namaste:

Reminds me of a video I came across the other day.

Tibetan Buddhist Monk Matthieu Ricard | On Keeping a Vegan or Vegetarian Diet


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PostPosted: Wed Oct 16, 2013 8:51 pm 
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People keep skating my questions about paying taxes, if you are "indirectly supporting slaughterhouses" by buying a product, then by paying taxes as an American (or other places), you are indirectly supporting all kinds of awful sentient-being killings by some of the greatest killing machines in history. you are indirectly supporting wrong livelihood by buying non-sweatshop free clothes..etc. Just being a citizen in good standing means by definition you support wrong livelihood to some degree.

So i'll repeat my question:

At what point does indirect moral culapbility stop, and why are you choosing to focus so much on your diet and not other things if it's such a big concern?

I'd really like a good explanation of the reasoning involved, if the claim of indirect support is the one that people consider definitive reason for being vegetarian or vegan.

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PostPosted: Wed Oct 16, 2013 9:03 pm 
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Johnny Dangerous wrote:
People keep skating my questions about paying taxes, if you are "indirectly supporting slaughterhouses", then by paying taxes as an American (or other places), you are indirectly supporting all kinds of awful sentient-being killings. Just being a citizen in good standing means by defintion you support wrong livelihood to some degree.

So i'll repeat my question:

At what point does indirect moral culapbility stop, and why are you choosing to focus so much on your diet and not other things if it's such a big concern?

I'd really like a good explanation of the reasoning involved, if the claim of indirect support is the one that people consider definitive reason for being vegetarian or vegan.


A good reason is that they will send you to jail if you stop paying taxes! Trust me, I would stop paying taxes if I could! :rolling:

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At what point does indirect moral culapbility stop


I believe that question is answered by the very definition of veganism. It's defined as "a way of living that seeks to exclude, as far as possible and practicable, all forms of exploitation of, and cruelty to, animals for food, clothing and any other purpose."

So the moral culpability stops when it becomes impossible or impractical to act otherwise, as is the case with paying taxes. Not paying taxes is not an option. Choosing rice and beans instead of hamburgers is an option for many.

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PostPosted: Wed Oct 16, 2013 9:10 pm 
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seeker242 wrote:
Johnny Dangerous wrote:
People keep skating my questions about paying taxes, if you are "indirectly supporting slaughterhouses", then by paying taxes as an American (or other places), you are indirectly supporting all kinds of awful sentient-being killings. Just being a citizen in good standing means by defintion you support wrong livelihood to some degree.

So i'll repeat my question:

At what point does indirect moral culapbility stop, and why are you choosing to focus so much on your diet and not other things if it's such a big concern?

I'd really like a good explanation of the reasoning involved, if the claim of indirect support is the one that people consider definitive reason for being vegetarian or vegan.


A good reason is that they will send you to jail if you stop paying taxes! Trust me, I would stop paying taxes if I could! :rolling:

Quote:
At what point does indirect moral culapbility stop


I believe that question is answered by the very definition of veganism. It's defined as "a way of living that seeks to exclude, as far as possible and practicable, all forms of exploitation of, and cruelty to, animals for food, clothing and any other purpose."

So the moral culpability stops when it becomes impossible or impractical to act otherwise, as is the case with paying taxes. Not paying taxes is not an option. Choosing rice and beans instead of hamburgers is an option for many.



Right, again..the problem is that the very act of being a vegan (at least most of them) nearly guarantees that someone lives around, and is nourished by ill-gotten wealth that comes from centuries of imperialism, talk about indirectly profiting from wrong livelihood. In fact, it's that very wealth and abundance that even makes it possible to be a vegan for most. That is what makes the absolute claim of simply altering one's diet NOT fit the definition you give, unless you just want to have tunnel vision about how people's interactions work.

I'm not saying I don't think it's the 'right" decision in some way, i've been vegetarian in the past and I limit my meat intake..i'm just saying it doesn't seem to be a decision of anywhere the scope that your statement makes it, when there are larger issues of participating in wrong livelihood all around us.

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PostPosted: Wed Oct 16, 2013 9:20 pm 
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Johnny Dangerous wrote:

Right, again..the problem is that the very act of being a vegan (at least most of them) nearly guarantees that someone lives around, and is nourished by ill-gotten wealth that comes from centuries of imperialism, in fact, it's that very wealth and abundance that even makes it possible to be a vegan for most. That is what makes the absolute claim of simply altering one's diet NOT fit the definition you give, unless you just want to have tunnel vision.


I don't see how one can say it does not fit the definition I gave. It's impossible to "get rid of" centuries of imperialism. It's not impossible to chose rice over hamburger. It's a matter of what is possible and what is impossible.

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in fact, it's that very wealth and abundance that even makes it possible to be a vegan for most.


I don't see that as a fact. Jains would be a good example. They have been vegetarian for thousands of years in India, one of the poorest countries in the world. Ital Rastafarian's in Jamaica also, another poor country. It's more correct to say an abundance of meat is the luxury. Not to mention the fact that in many places in countries like the USA, one can eat vegan for something like $30 a week. Even someone on food stamps can afford that.

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PostPosted: Wed Oct 16, 2013 9:23 pm 
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seeker242 wrote:
Johnny Dangerous wrote:

Right, again..the problem is that the very act of being a vegan (at least most of them) nearly guarantees that someone lives around, and is nourished by ill-gotten wealth that comes from centuries of imperialism, in fact, it's that very wealth and abundance that even makes it possible to be a vegan for most. That is what makes the absolute claim of simply altering one's diet NOT fit the definition you give, unless you just want to have tunnel vision.


Quote:
don't see how one can say it does not fit the definition I gave. It's impossible to "get rid of" centuries of imperialism. It's not impossible to chose rice over hamburger. It's a matter of what is possible and what is impossible.


it is as impossible as it is for people to stop eating meat and killing animals.

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It is most important to tame your mind within....

In so far as the Ultimate, or the true nature of being is concerned,
there are neither buddhas or demons.
He who frees himself from fear and hope, evil and virtue,
will realize the insubstantial and groundless nature of confusion.
Samsara will then appear as the mahamudra itself….

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OMMANIPADMEHUNG

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PostPosted: Wed Oct 16, 2013 9:27 pm 
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seeker242 wrote:
It's more correct to say an abundance of meat is the luxury.

Not to mention the fact that in many places in countries like the USA, one can eat vegan for something like $30 a week.


no its not. depending on the location in example tibet, there was no vegetables, only meat basically.

also many other countries, over half of the earth propably meet has been a means of survival for people. depending on climate location where you live. meet is not the luxury it has been a necessity and is normal ordinary food.

and the reason why someone can be a vegan so cheaply in US because most of the vegetables are GMO and produced in other countries and it is on the expense of more poor countries.

_________________
If the thought of demons
Never rises in your mind,
You need not fear the demon hosts around you.
It is most important to tame your mind within....

In so far as the Ultimate, or the true nature of being is concerned,
there are neither buddhas or demons.
He who frees himself from fear and hope, evil and virtue,
will realize the insubstantial and groundless nature of confusion.
Samsara will then appear as the mahamudra itself….

-Milarepa

OMMANIPADMEHUNG

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ls6P9tOYmdo


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PostPosted: Wed Oct 16, 2013 9:29 pm 
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seeker242 wrote:

I don't see how one can say it does not fit the definition I gave. It's impossible to "get rid of" centuries of imperialism. It's not impossible to chose rice over hamburger. It's a matter of what is possible and what is impossible.


Yes again, possible for you because of your circumstances, not possible or doable for others for a wide variety of reasons.

seeker242 wrote:

I don't see that as a fact. Jains would be a good example. They have been vegetarian for thousands of years in India, one of the poorest countries in the world. Ital Rastafarian's in Jamaica also, another poor country. It's more correct to say an abundance of meat is the luxury. Not to mention the fact that in many places in countries like the USA, one can eat vegan for something like $30 a week. Even someone on food stamps can afford that.


That's why I said most, not all. There are like 4 million Jains or something in the world I think. You can eat vegan for $30 a week again, because of the kind of country the US is, for the most part, not because of a long history like the other two examples. my point there is not to say you should not eat vegan, but to point out the absurdity of these arguments that choose to focus on indirection actions as some sort of greater moral good, or great moral downfall. for sure there are places where indirect approval matters alot (Germans giving tacit approval to Nazis during WWII), but IMO the dietary changes of some (mostly) first worlders proclaimed as being the height of ahimsa really are nothing special. Particularly when the same people are often choosing NOT to alter their actions in other, equally important areas, to me it shows the absurdity of their arguments.

Yes, there are other vegetarian/vegan traditions, but again they occur when those things are possible, and the context to me is quite a bit different than the westerners I see proclaiming moral superiority due to ordering a black bean burger. And do you really think someone on foods tamps should prioritize eating vegan:)

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Last edited by Johnny Dangerous on Wed Oct 16, 2013 9:37 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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PostPosted: Wed Oct 16, 2013 9:36 pm 
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KonchokZoepa wrote:
seeker242 wrote:
Johnny Dangerous wrote:

Right, again..the problem is that the very act of being a vegan (at least most of them) nearly guarantees that someone lives around, and is nourished by ill-gotten wealth that comes from centuries of imperialism, in fact, it's that very wealth and abundance that even makes it possible to be a vegan for most. That is what makes the absolute claim of simply altering one's diet NOT fit the definition you give, unless you just want to have tunnel vision.


Quote:
don't see how one can say it does not fit the definition I gave. It's impossible to "get rid of" centuries of imperialism. It's not impossible to chose rice over hamburger. It's a matter of what is possible and what is impossible.


it is as impossible as it is for people to stop eating meat and killing animals.


It's impossible for vegetarians to stop eating meat? I'm sorry, I'm not following. Are you talking about human beings as a species or individual persons? I'm talking about individual persons.
KonchokZoepa wrote:

seeker242 wrote:
It's more correct to say an abundance of meat is the luxury.

Not to mention the fact that in many places in countries like the USA, one can eat vegan for something like $30 a week.


no its not. depending on the location in example tibet, there was no vegetables, only meat basically.

also many other countries, over half of the earth propably meet has been a means of survival for people. depending on climate location where you live. meet is not the luxury it has been a necessity and is normal ordinary food.

and the reason why someone can be a vegan so cheaply in US because most of the vegetables are GMO and produced in other countries and it is on the expense of more poor countries.


Yes precisely! It depends on where you live. For people living at 14,000 ft elevation, it's near impossible to be vegetarian. So there would be no "moral culpability" for not being vegetarian because living at 14,000 ft elevation, you really have no other choice. Not really so with someone who shops at a supermarket with 20,000 different products to chose from. However, to say for most people in the world being vegan is just a function of wealth, is not entirely accurate. Neither absolute extreme, on either side of the issue, is accurate.

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PostPosted: Wed Oct 16, 2013 9:38 pm 
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Nope, not entirely accurate, just mostly. most are too poor to worry about it, are there exceptions, of course, and good on them.

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PostPosted: Wed Oct 16, 2013 9:47 pm 
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Johnny Dangerous wrote:

Yes again, possible for you because of your circumstances, not possible or doable for others for a wide variety of reasons.


Precisely! And that is why the definition includes "as far is is possible and practical"

Quote:
my point there is not to say you should not eat vegan, but to point out the absurdity of these arguments that choose to focus on indirection actions as some sort of greater moral good, or great moral downfall.


The only absurd argument I see are the ones that go to extremes. People on both sides of the issue are often guilty of that IMO.

Quote:
Yes, there are other vegetarian/vegan traditions, but again they occur when those things are possible,


Precisely, "when those things are possible" are the key words!

Quote:
And do you really think someone on foods tamps should prioritize eating vegan


Yes, their health would benefit greatly over eating McDonalds and other crap junk food.

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PostPosted: Wed Oct 16, 2013 10:38 pm 
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Johnny Dangerous wrote:
People keep skating my questions about paying taxes, if you are "indirectly supporting slaughterhouses" by buying a product, then by paying taxes as an American (or other places), you are indirectly supporting all kinds of awful sentient-being killings by some of the greatest killing machines in history. you are indirectly supporting wrong livelihood by buying non-sweatshop free clothes..etc. Just being a citizen in good standing means by definition you support wrong livelihood to some degree.

What is wrong with supporting wrong livelihood to a little degree? It is impossible to find any substantial moral culpability in that. That's like going into a poor person's cupboard, who told you "I have no food," and finding crumbs in the corner of one cupboard and concluding he is lying - that's absurd.

Wrong livelihood is "a lay follower should not engage in five types of business... etc." When someone says "engaging in business," it is obvious what that means. It is what an average person would expect from such a phrase, i.e. being employed or making livelihood out of such a business.

This reminds me of the kind of obsession Christians have with sinlessness, mentioned in that lecture by Alan Watts. Or the aim for actionlessness by Jains. It's really all fruitless and useless to worry about such things. Bad karma doesn't even completely cease after nirvana, you have to enter complete and final nirvana - so just relax. :coffee:


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PostPosted: Wed Oct 23, 2013 6:14 pm 
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@Malcolm:
Thankfully the vegans at animal visuals, have done actual research and produced a graph on the actual lifecycle impact of various types of foods/diets:
Image

You can read about the methodology and sources used at: Number of Animals Killed to Produce One Million Calories in Eight Food Categories.

Animal byproducts are largely waste that is allowed to be dumped unregulated into the environment. This is a defacto subsidization of animal foods. Human municipalities have to treat their waste-water, while animal farms and Concentrated Animal Feeding Operations(CAFOs) which actually produce far more fecal matter, do not, and even get to pass off the toxic waste of animals as fertilizer that is actually sold. If this was not the case, whiny meat eaters would have to pay the true cost of meat, and most would have to seriously curtail their meat consumption. It is not some benefit like you like to present it with your obfuscations and deceptions. Over 98% of antibiotics in the United States are given to fodder animals raised for meat. Meat eating is one of the biggest environment and public health hazards. That alleged fertilizer from chicken, cow manure, ground up animals, etc., is literally toxic waste. Even while alive those animals would have dropped dead in short order without their massive dosages of steroids, arsenic and antibiotics.

@Johnny Dangerous:
Are you seriously joking or actually suggesting that everyone who does something should do nothing instead, because they are not doing everything? Or perhaps more important, because it will make Johnny feel better about doing nothing? That is what you are saying.

Why do you think the United States government is organized as a global criminal Empire?
Scientific American wrote:
Use It and Lose It: The Outsize Effect of U.S. Consumption on the Environment
...

It is well known that Americans consume far more natural resources and live much less sustainably than people from any other large country of the world. “A child born in the United States will create thirteen times as much ecological damage over the course of his or her lifetime than a child born in Brazil,” reports the Sierra Club’s Dave Tilford, adding that the average American will drain as many resources as 35 natives of India and consume 53 times more goods and services than someone from China.

Tilford cites a litany of sobering statistics showing just how profligate Americans have been in using and abusing natural resources. For example, between 1900 and 1989 U.S. population tripled while its use of raw materials grew by a factor of 17. “With less than 5 percent of world population, the U.S. uses one-third of the world’s paper, a quarter of the world’s oil, 23 percent of the coal, 27 percent of the aluminum, and 19 percent of the copper,” he reports. “Our per capita use of energy, metals, minerals, forest products, fish, grains, meat, and even fresh water dwarfs that of people living in the developing world.”

...


Well if Americans would actually as a people consume less, along with their imperial allies in the rest of the Anglosphere, Western Europe, Japan, South Korea, etc., then maybe the world would not have to be like it is. But of course that will never happen. These countries will continue to have more and more overweight meat eating people, while the rest of the world increasingly will starve to make debt repayments and due to climate change that is unfortunately gonna affect the Global South and those nearest the equator more than the resource hogging, Global North.


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PostPosted: Wed Oct 23, 2013 7:30 pm 
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I see we are back to the same old arguments again about supply and demand now for the last couple pages...

...so I'll just repeat the stats (facts): despite increasing conversion to, promotion of and fanaticism about veganism, animal slaughter has increased steadily.

Therefore, all of Namkhai Norbu's points make perfect sense. We work with circumstances.

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PostPosted: Wed Oct 23, 2013 7:44 pm 
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Johnny Dangerous wrote:
gad rgyangs wrote:
its simply a matter of intent: does one try to avoid participating in violence and killing as much as possible, or does one justify extra and unnecessary killing for the sake of one's gustatory pleasure?



The vast majority of people who eat meat do so because they are following the diet choices of their culture, not just for pleasure, for most it isn't even a consciously made decision. The people doing something exceptional are the ones changing their diet (again, ironically often first-worlders who have the luxury of doing so due to the gross amounts of wealth they indirectly benefit from) with some perceived notions of an isolated lifestyle change having a much greater effect on anything (either inner or outer) than it likely does.

Seriously, take your argument and apply it to anything, driving ,paying taxes, buying clothing, whatever, and it quickly becomes absurd, because you can't judge moral culpability the same way when it comes indirect circumstances, otherwise it gets ridiculous...you are just choosing one among many different indirect activities that contribute to awful things in the world. a meritorious thing to do, but I don't think it gives you any moral high ground over those that choose not to.

So if someone wants to make these arguments, my question is at what point does indirect moral culpability stop? I mean if you are going to assert it's that important, it needs to have clearly defined parameters, else the only truly moral thing is living completely off the grid, in a pre-modern lifestyle affecting no one and nothing. Since it actually requires pretty much the opposite of this to even engage in a vegetarian/vegan lifestyle at all, the claims of moral superiority strike me as ridiculous.


Don't you know that everyone here makes their clothes out of burlap sacks, rides a bicycle everywhere and don't frivolously expend excess polluting energy with stuff like chit-chatting on computers all the time specifically to argue with people who are trying to be good people and put them down in the most morally superior way possible?

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PostPosted: Wed Oct 23, 2013 7:47 pm 
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Are we talking about this same Namkhai Norbu:
Image

Is that really how desperate meat-eaters are, that they cite a massively overweight person's dietary advice? Actually I think a good definition of fanaticism is when you cite the diet of well known people, who are obviously over a hundred pounds overweight for their height as judged by multiple publicly available photos.

I don't think obesity, diabetes, high blood pressure, increased cancer risk, ischemia, etc., are circumstances that anyone would want to deal with, and they can largely be prevented or even reversed by avoiding the meat he advocates. This isn't the 19th Century in the high Tibetan plateau. It just doesn't harm animals, it also harms people. No one wants a job changing someone else's bed pans because someone else ate themselves into disease, due to a rich diet.


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PostPosted: Wed Oct 23, 2013 7:53 pm 
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I will take the advice of ChNNR over that of someone who is mentally ill any day of the week.

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PostPosted: Wed Oct 23, 2013 8:08 pm 
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You can take his advice and end up with his awesome physique, if you haven't already with your numerous weight troubles, that show the alleged superiority of the carnivore way.

I will instead take the advice of people with actual credentials like Dr. Michael Greger(a man who has actually published in many peer reviewed publications) who shows in this talk that almost every major cause of death in the United States according to the Center for Disease Control can be reduced, reversed or prevented with a plant based diet:
Uprooting the Leading Causes of Death



This isn't Tibet in the 17th Century, a country where most plants wouldn't grow and thus they actually believed not eating meat leaded to health problems, since they could only grow very few plant foods. There is so much nutrition research and population based studies in the modern West, you cannot spout such nonsense from people supporting Tibetan superstitions and expect any respect for them. The Tibetans back before they were forcefully reintegrated by the Chinese into the world economy, had short lifespans and multiple chronic illnesses, due to their animal heavy diet. You cannot cite the nonsense superstitions of Tibetan gurus and Tibetan doctors and expect to trump the actual research and facts.

I think mental illness would be best left to describe the meat eaters who invent all sorts of fanciful nonsense health and environmental benefits and cite laughable sources to support it.


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